Signs of Sensory Integration Disorder:
- Overly sensitive to touch , movement, sights, or sounds
- Under-reactive to sensory stimulation
- Activity level that is unusually high or unusually low
- Coordination problems (poor balance or motor coordination)
- Delays in Speech, language, motor skills, or academic achievement
- Poor organization of behavior (impulsive, distractible, frustrated, aggressive)
- Poor self concept (may appear lazy, bored, or unmotivated)
A student with sensory integration disorder will generally exhibit more than one of the above signs.
The St. Anthony School believes that far too many children with sensory integration disorder are misdiagnosed and not properly treated. The SPD (Sensory Processing Disorder) Foundationstates that 1 in 20 children experiences symptoms of SPD.
There is a broad spectrum of severity but for many, the symptoms are chronic and disrupt everyday life. Children with SPD may over-respond to sensation and find clothing, physical contact, light, sound, food, or other sensory input to be unbearable.
Their problems with processing sensory information put these children at great risk for emotional, social, and educational problems. They often become socially isolated and suffer from low self-esteem and related issues.
Sensory Integration Disorder Classroom
Most physical school settings are nightmares for the child suffering with sensory issues. Bright fluorescent, buzzing lights, floor to ceiling charts, posters, and decorations that typically adorn the classroom drive these children “over the edge.” St. Anthony’s classrooms have been carefully designed to soothe these children so that they can function and perform academically and socially.
Occupational Therapy for Sensory Integration Disorder
Once SPD is diagnosed, typical treatment will involve Occupational Therapy (OT) with an SI approach. Our teachers and staff have been taught numerous activities by occupational therapists that are used throughout the day, especially with the younger students. Our goal is to foster appropriate responses to sensory stimuli in an active and functional way.